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End of road for traffic jams?

2012-05-04 09:30

GETTING A MOVE ON: This graphic shows how congestion alleviation works with the system

Honda has created the world's first technology capable not only of detecting the potential for traffic congestion but also the capability to minimise it.

The Japanese automaker had recognising that poor acceleration and deceleration behaviour by one car could influence following vehicles to the extent that congestion to start to build.


Experiments in conjunction with Tokyo University's Research Centre for Advanced Science and Technology demonstrated that the system helped increase average traffic speed by about 23% and improved following vehicles' fuel efficiency by eight percent.

Honda is now engaged (May/July 2012) in public-road testing in Italy and Indonesia with a view to bringing the technology to market.

The system, rather than providing information to help the driver avoid existing congestion, monitors the acceleration and deceleration patterns of its host vehicle to determine whether it is likely to create congestion. Based on this determination, the system provides the driver with information, including a colour display through the on-board terminal, to encourage smooth driving and so alleviate the intensity of acceleration and deceleration by trailing vehicles.


The positive effect on minimising congestion and fuel consumption can be further increased by connecting the cars' terminals to cloud servers to make the driver aware of and in sync with the driving patterns of vehicles ahead by activating adaptive cruise control at the right time to maintain a constant following distance at the most appropriate gap.

Traffic congestion not only slows traffic but also increases CO2 emissions and makes rear-end collisions more likely. Striving to realise "the joy and freedom of mobility" and "a sustainable society where people can enjoy life", as stated in Honda's Environmental Vision, the company will work toward the establishment of a congestion-free mobility society worldwide.


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